Dick DeVos: A Successful Entrepreneur and Philanthropist

Dick DeVos and his wife Betsy DeVos contributed more than 11 million dollars in 2015 to charity. This data is found on a news report on their website known as the Dick and Betsy DeVos Family Foundation. Even though most people claim that the DeVoses spend a lot on political campaigns, the 2015 charity donations were twice as much as the amount Betsy DeVos dedicated to her campaign contributions over the last five years.

 

Dick’s family has a great history of donating to the Republican party. Led by Dick’s dad and the co-founder for Amway, Rich DeVos, the DeVos family contributed more than 104 million dollars in 2015. This saw the family ranked in 24th place by Forbes as “America’s Top Givers.”

 

Forbes also estimates that the lifetime giving of the DeVos family at $1.33 billion which happens to be about 25 percent of the family’s combined wealth. Dick’s wife, Betsy, was also raised by a generous family in Holland. Her father is the late Edgar Prince who was a well-known industrialist in Holland.

 

Much of their donations and philanthropic activities have revealed that education is what they consider the most important. About 26 percent of their donations in 2015 went to education and also awarded a further three percent to groups that favored education reform. Dick Devos feels that the current education system is not fulfilling the “American dream.” DeVos also added that some kids could not get a proper education simply because they were living in the wrong ZIP codes.

 

Dick also mentioned that even though he supports the change in the public education platform, he is not criticizing any employee in the process. He feels that a lot of administrators and teachers are very hard working but the system needs to change so that the efforts of these employees can be efficient.

 

Data from their foundation’s tax records showed that a large chunk of their education funding in two years before 2015 went mainly to Michigan schools. These included schools such as Rehoboth Christian School, Potter’s House in Wyoming, Ferris State University in Big Rapids and West Michigan Aviation Academy among others.

 

Dick DeVos’ Career

 

Some of the top positions Dick has held over the years were in organizations such as NBA’s Orlando Magic and Amway. He currently works as the president of The Windquest Group. He worked at Amway from 1993 to 2002 where he was in charge of the company’s operations in 50 countries. Dick led Amway to record total sales of about $4.5 billion. He also led the firm to open new markets. He became the chief executive officer of the Orlando Magic for three years after his family acquired the team in 1991.